Friday, 31 December 2010

Oh no! Not again – Boxing Day Earthquake

Yes, again, but once again the motel had no damage and is operating normally.

Here’s what happened.

In Christchurch everyone had a quiet Christmas day with no noticeable aftershocks. It was indeed a relief, perhaps too much of a relief.

No sooner had the big day finished, we were revisited by aftershocks again. The first came just after 2am on 26 December, Boxing Day, and had us up checking that all was ok – yes we get used to it!

Can’t remember if we noticed the 5.30am shake but we did notice the one just after 8am. It brought back memories of just after the September quake when we had numerous shakey shakes in one day – was today going to be another one of these days?

We found out at 10.30am when we had a 4.9 aftershock – but was it an aftershock – technically yes but it felt more like an earthquake to us. The big difference was that the epicenter of this shake was at the corner of Moorhouse Ave and Montreal St. just over 2 kms from here, and it was shallow. It was a little frightening because the shaking was once again different from the other aftershocks we have been having, and as it turned out, it was more violent than the 4 Sep. shake. Luckily it was only 4-5 seconds long.

Still, the damage was done and this time it was centered in the centre of the city. Many older buildings which escaped damage in the 4 Sep quake were not so lucky this time and once again buildings were getting red stickers on them.

This time the damage was mainly limited to the central city area and our area escaped unharmed. Here at the motel, we and the building were shaken but once again we did not sustain any damage.

We can once again be thankful as no-one was injured and Christchurch just has another mess to clean up. Christchurch is once again shaken but we are still good!

Now, 5 days on, while a few buildings still have fences around them, the cordons have all been lifted and tonite’s New Year Party in the Cathedral Square will go on as planned.

We wish everyone a most wonderful New Year and look forward to welcoming everyone to Christchurch in 2011.

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

A Heavenly Spectacle in Christchurch

Today we were treated to 2 heavenly spectacles in Christchurch, a wonderful Nor’ Wester sunset and a Lunar Eclipse.

 We were not only able to remember to look at the right time but we also managed to take a few picks to capture the grandeur of the moments.

The Nor’ West wind flow fair wacked us today but it was worse down south towards Ashburton. Still, I had to tie up the trees to stop them being blasted out of shape!

Towards evening we were treated to a 30 minute transitional light display as the setting sun lit up the Christchurch sky.

The lunar eclipse was set for 9pm but no-one could find the moon. Troublesome. But towards 10pm Mr. Moon finally made an appearance and we were treated to our second celestial delicacy of the evening. It’s these small things that life is about!

And just in case you did not see it we decided to point it out to you!

 Tomorrow may be somewhat boring with just a sunrise and sunset.

Monday, 20 December 2010

New Way to Look at Christchurch!

Want to know what central Christchurch looks like at 7am each morning?

Follow us on Twitter or Facebook to find out!

This all started on 4 September, the day of the Canterbury Earthquake(blog). We never lost the electricity here at the motel but when I walked out onto Colombo St. around 5am and looked towards town, there was nothing. The whole central city area was enveloped in darkness. Believe me, that was a strange feeling.

That started my habit of walking out onto Colombo St. each morning, usually when I got the newspapers, and looking towards the central city – can’t explain why, Christchurch has always just been Christchurch. Maybe it was just to make sure Christchurch was still there – especially since the Cathedral is clearly visible from the motel entrance. Maybe the quake has raised people’s awareness of the city they live in.

Now, each morning when I get the newspapers around 7am, I take a quick shot of central Christchurch and a hopefully topical part of the morning paper to share with everyone. So join me and enjoy the best city in the world 7am series.